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Louisiana Asks Feds To Help Pay For Barry Damages

Hurricane Barry as seen by satellite on Saturday, July 13th, 2019.

Even though Barry didn’t turn out to be as bad as many people feared, it still caused damage in several Louisiana parishes. Now, the state of Louisiana is asking the federal government to help pay for the costs of preparing for the storm and post-storm cleanup.

In a letter sent Wednesday, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards asked President Donald Trump to declare Barry a major disaster. The letter says the state and local governments have been overwhelmed by the $17 million cost of preparing for and recovering from Barry, and that they need help from the federal government.

If Trump agrees, FEMA would reimburse the state for about 75 percent of most of those expenses.

The public assistance would apply, in different capacities, to the following parishes: Allen, Ascension, Assumption, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberia, Iberville, Jefferson, Lafourche, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Charles, St. Helena, St. John the Baptist, St. Mary, Tangipahoa, Terrebonne, West Feliciana, and Vermillion.

There is no timeline associated with the major disaster request.

This disaster declaration is separate from the emergency declarations that were signed during the storm.

Support for the Coastal Desk comes from the Greater New Orleans Foundation, the Walton Family Foundation, and local listeners.

As Coastal Reporter, Travis Lux covers flood protection, coastal restoration, infrastructure, the energy and seafood industries, and the environment. In this role he's reported on everything from pipeline protests in the Atchafalaya swamp, to how shrimpers cope with low prices. He had a big hand in producing the series, New Orleans: Ready Or Not?, which examined how prepared New Orleans is for a future with more extreme weather. In 2017, Travis co-produced two episodes of TriPod: New Orleans at 300 examining New Orleans' historic efforts at flood protection. One episode, NOLA vs Nature: The Other Biggest Flood in New Orleans History, was recognized with awards from the Public Radio News Directors and the New Orleans Press Club. His stories often find a wider audience on national programs, too, like NPR's Morning Edition, WBUR's Here and Now, and WHYY's The Pulse.

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